Top 7 Best Clear Coat for White Paint (Review & Buyers’ Guide 2022)

Clearcoat, also know as topcoat provides an easy in-cleaning whatever surface it is applied on. When the surface of paint does not have the requisite shiny finish, it tends to look unattractive. It helps protect and preserve your beautiful finish for years to come.

A clear coat is a protective finish that you apply on your painted or stained furniture after it has thoroughly dried, giving the piece a shield against water rings from drinking glasses, scratches, and dirt in general.

Furniture surfaces and the exterior surfaces of a vehicle are somewhat fragile. They can break and get scratched when exposed to weather elements. Additionally, years of wear and tear can meddle with the surfaces, causing them to lose their attractiveness and aesthetic value. It can be heartbreaking seeing your furniture and car paint lose their beauty.

For this reason, you need the best clear coat for white paint. The best clear coat will offer additional protection to the car paint and furniture surface generally. This means that the surface will be less prone to wear and tear and continue to stay attractive. But, what is the best clear coat out there?

Choose from our top 3 Picks

Best Buy
Varathane 200041H
Editor's Pick
Rust-Oleum 287722
KBS Coatings 8304
Varathane 200041H Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane, Quart, Gloss Finish
Rust-Oleum 1 qt Brands 287722 Clear Chalked Ultra Matte Paint, 30 Fl Oz (Pack of 1)
KBS Coatings 8304 DiamondFinish Watercolor Clear Coat - 1 Pint, Coats up to 50 sq ft
Prime Status
Star Rating
1 Quart
30 oz
1 Pint
Best Buy
Varathane 200041H
Varathane 200041H Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane, Quart, Gloss Finish
Prime Status
Star Rating
1 Quart
Editor's Pick
Rust-Oleum 287722
Rust-Oleum 1 qt Brands 287722 Clear Chalked Ultra Matte Paint, 30 Fl Oz (Pack of 1)
Prime Status
Star Rating
30 oz
KBS Coatings 8304
KBS Coatings 8304 DiamondFinish Watercolor Clear Coat - 1 Pint, Coats up to 50 sq ft
Prime Status
Star Rating
1 Pint

Last update on 2024-05-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Choosing the best clear coat for white paint can be a very daunting task, but with this article, you’ll undoubtedly be able to know all you need to know before choosing the one that best suits your white paint.

Top 5 Best Clear Coat for White Paint

1. Varathane 200041H Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane

This is one of the best clear coats in the market that not only protects your white paint but also works its magic on your cabinets, doors, and windows. It is water-based, helps maintain the beauty of your furniture, and provides excellent shine to the surface, needing just 30 minutes to dry to touch.

This clear coat is water-resistant, stain & scratch-resistant, gives a highly glossy look that does not get pale over time, and remains as fresh as new.
If you want a very reliable clear coat for your white paint, Varathane 200041H should be your first choice without questions due to its balanced features.

Varathane 200041H Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane, Quart, Gloss Finish
  • Protects indoor wood surfaces such as furniture, windows, cabinets, trim and more
  • Water based formula dries fast and cleans up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in 30 minutes with coverage up to 125 sq. ft., recoat after 2 hours
  • Durable formula provides outstanding stain and scratch resistance with excellent clarity
  • Gloss finish creates a polished and clean look

Last update on 2024-05-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  • It dries to touch within 30 minutes
  • Has a comprehensive coverage
  • Easy to use and does not stain surfaces
  • Provides scratch and stain protection
  • Durable and doesn’t get pale over time
  • It gives a glossy and rich finish that is easy to clean


  • It has an awful smell
  • Cannot be used with a roller and can’t load a brush

2. Rust-Oleum 287722 Ultra Matte Interior Chalked Paint

If you’re searching for an economical coating complex and robust, Rust-Oleum 287722 is the best coat for your white paint. It also helps cover various interior surfaces like wood, metal, ceramics, canvas, and heated materials.

It is highly adhesive and effortless to apply even for beginners as you don’t need to stress over setting aside heaps of effort to prepare your surfaces before applying your clear coat. Its low odor and VOC formula allow for easy cleanup with soap and water. It dries to touch in just 30 minutes, drying to an ultra-matte velvety, smooth finish.

Rust-Oleum 1 qt Brands 287722 Clear Chalked Ultra Matte Paint, 30 Fl Oz (Pack of 1)
  • Use on a variety of interior surfaces like wood, metal, ceramic, canvas and easily distress to create a vintage look
  • Low-odor/VOC formula allows for easy clean up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in just 30 minutes and covers up to 150 sq. ft.; one-coat coverage allows projects to be completed easily
  • Excellent adhesion and easy application with minimal prep
  • Protective topcoat that dries to an ultra-matte velvety, smooth finish

Last update on 2024-05-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  • It dries to touch easily within 30 minutes
  • Easy to apply and highly adhesive
  • Has a low odor and allows for the easy cleanup
  • Has a superior coverage of 150 sq ft
  • It gives a smooth finish


  • It is pretty thick

3. KBS coatings 8304 Diamond Finish clear coat

This is an excellent clear coat for a white paint that helps secure inside vehicle parts, e.g., motor squares, brake segments, chamber heads, keeping your vehicle parts from consumption. You can also use it on the outside of your vehicle.

It is not as lustrous as other clear coats on the lookout; it is simple to use and causes you to bid farewell to yellow and other climates components that can destroy the surface of your thing. This is a very tough clear coat that remains permanently flexible and can perform excellently even in the most challenging environment without peeling or cracking.

KBS Coatings 8304 DiamondFinish Watercolor Clear Coat - 1 Pint, Coats up to 50 sq ft
  • Direct To Metal Application - No Additives Needed
  • Apply directly to Painted Surfaces
  • Single Part Formula which is Tougher and Harder than 2 Part Clear Coats
  • Seals both Paints and Metals and is Self Leveling (No brush Marks)

Last update on 2024-05-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


• It is an excellent and durable finish
• Doesn’t yellow over time and highly resistant to corrosion
• Hardens very quickly and cures without the application of heat
• It can survive in the most challenging environment without cracking or peeling


• Its lid is difficult to open

4. Minwax 65555444 Polycrylic Protective Finish

Minwax 65555444 is one of the best coats for your white paint, which will help embellish your home and revive your furniture without spending much on new furnishings, giving it another life and help carry the dirt of reflexivity to your furniture that you might never have seen. To achieve your desired result with this product, apply a first thin coat to the already dry painted surface with a foam brush or synthetic paintbrush and wait till it is dry.

Lightly sand between coats using your 220 grit sanding paper or sponge. Then apply the second coat and repeat the process until 3-5 coats ( the final coat doesn’t need sanding).

When this clear coat is applied, it leaves a delicate layer over the surface, which guarantees the perfect reflexivity we expect in an ideal clear coat and can be applied without stressing over any brush marks. Due to the overall utilization of this clear coat, its slim layer leaves the furniture inclined to get scratched and finished.

1 qt Minwax 65555 Clear Polycrylic Water-Based Protective Finish Gloss
  • PROTECT WOOD SURFACES – Minwax Polycrylic Protective Finish protects and adds beauty to your interior wood projects, including woodwork, furniture, doors and cabinets. The clear top coat protects against scratches, spills, dirt and more.
  • CRYSTAL CLEAR FINISH THAT LASTS – The crystal clear finished offered in this protective coating is ideal for use over all Minwax Oil-Based and Water-Based Stains and colors, as well as all wood species including light woods like maple, ash and birch.
  • GLOSS SHEEN – Give your wood projects a sleek finish with this gloss clear varnish. It not only protects the natural beauty of the wood, but offers a shiny, sleek sheen for a bright, modern look. It’s also non-yellowing, non-ambering and low odor.
  • ULTRA FAST DRYING – Get more done with this protective poly coating. It’s a fast-drying clear coat, which allows for quick recoats after 2 hours, letting you get projects done faster. Be sure to apply with a high-quality synthetic bristle brush.
  • EASY CLEAN UP – This water-based wood finish allows for easy soap and water clean-up, so you don’t have to stress about spills and big messes

Last update on 2024-05-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  • Easy to apply without problems
  • Self-leveling and crystal clear
  • It is nonyellowing
  • Has a low odor
  • Dries quickly


  • It can get scratched

5. KILZ premium High-hide Stain-blocking Primer

Attempting the KILZ premium high-hide stain-blocking interior makes your furniture stand out amongst others. It helps cover all the pores in your furnishings and works impeccably to smoothen all the outside of the wood without help from anyone else while giving a substantial filling to the wooden surface.

This clear coat does not require sanding between two coats and eliminates all the defects, giving you a solid reflexive smooth look. It dries fast, gives security against colors and scratches on the furnishings. You cannot use this clear coat on surfaces that are relied upon to be set in the open air.

KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer, White, 1-gallon,13041
  • This powerful stain-blocking water-base formula seals surfaces, helps to achieve a uniform finish, hides stains and previous colors and offers excellent adhesion to most interior and exterior surfaces. Zero VOCs, low smell and easy clean up with soap and water makes it safe to use in occupied homes and work spaces.
  • KILZ 3 Premium offers just the right consistency for a smooth and level finish that seals porous surfaces and fills in small imperfections. Use KILZ 3 Premium under or over latex or oil based paint. Use on properly prepared surfaces on the loose of filth, grease, chalk, rust and peeling paint.
  • With excellent adhesion for most surfaces, use on interior and exterior drywall, plaster, woodwork, paneling, masonry and brick. Ideal for high-humidity areas including bathrooms and laundry rooms.
  • Use for color changes, to seal light to medium stains and to minimize surface imperfections caused by texture and porosity differences. For heavy stains, please consider KILZ Max primer.
  • This is a 1-gallon can of KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Latex Primer/Sealer in white for interior and exterior surfaces. Covers approximately 300-400 square feet per gallon. KILZ has been making premium primers and paints for 40 years. KILZ was named Paint Brand of the Year in 2015 in the Harris Poll EquiTrend Rankings.

Last update on 2024-06-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  • Low odor with zero VOCs
  • Easy to use and clean
  • Fast drying
  • Minimizes problems caused by color changes, surface textures, and minor stains
  • Offers excellent adhesion


  • Only for indoor use

6. Rust-Oleum Chalked Protective Coat

If you are looking for a water-based topcoat for interior use, we recommend this Rust-Oleum topcoat. You can use this topcoat on a variety of projects. Whether you are working on metal, wood, ceramic, or canvas, the Rust-Oleum topcoat is equal to the task. This product offers advanced protection against abrasion and enhances the white paint, leaving a beautiful, matte clear finish.

Sometimes, getting a clear coat with wide coverage is the issue people experience. This topcoat is different. It’s an economy, clear coat with broad coverage that dries into a thin, durable finish, thanks to its straightforward adhesiveness. It covers as much as 150 sq. ft and dries to touch in 30 minutes.

Rust-Oleum topcoat is also a low-odor formula, meaning that it will cause no harm even if you don’t wear a face mask. It’s easy to clean up with soap and water, making it more enjoyable to use.

Beginners will not have any issue using this topcoat, as it’s straightforward to apply. Plus, you don’t have to worry about taking so much time to prep the surface before applying the product. The coating is also quick as sanding between coats is not required while using this top clear coat.

Rust-Oleum 1 qt Brands 287722 Clear Chalked Ultra Matte Paint, 30 Fl Oz (Pack of 1)
  • Use on a variety of interior surfaces like wood, metal, ceramic, canvas and easily distress to create a vintage look
  • Low-odor/VOC formula allows for easy clean up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in just 30 minutes and covers up to 150 sq. ft.; one-coat coverage allows projects to be completed easily
  • Excellent adhesion and easy application with minimal prep
  • Protective topcoat that dries to an ultra-matte velvety, smooth finish

Last update on 2024-05-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Rust-Oleum Chalked Protective Coat is a unique clear coat formula that will leave your furniture and paint smooth and well-finished. You only need minimal prep time to get it all done and don’t need to mix it with anything. Overall, it’s an excellent topcoat that you will find easy to use.


  • It’s easy to apply.
  • Superior coverage of up to 150 sq. ft
  • Smooth matte finish
  • Easy to clean
  • It has a low-odor formula.
  • Dries rapidly
  • Can apply up to five coats


  • It can only be used indoors.
  • If not correctly applied, the topcoat may turn yellow.

7. General Finishes High-Performance Water-Based Topcoat Gloss

General Finishes is a brand that’s famous for making excellent topcoats and finishes. Since its inception, the American brand has produced super durable and tough finishes against weather elements and scratches. This water-based topcoat gloss is no different from their fantastic line of products.

General Finishes High-Performance Water-Based Topcoat Gloss provides a long-lasting finish and the type of toughness that you can see in a few topcoats around. It comes with a UV absorber for protecting the underlying paint from fading and ensures that the finish doesn’t break down in the sun if it comes in contact with it. It also comes with an inbuilt mildewcide to prevent mold and mildew growth.

The topcoat is easy to use, as it spreads evenly and quickly. However, it doesn’t dry that fast because the coat is strong. You’ll have to wait between an hour to two for it to dry before applying the next coat. Apart from the long waiting period, the topcoat is great. It provides a gloss finish, which means cleaning it will be easy.

If you want a tough topcoat to withstand abrasion, sun rays, and mold growth, we recommend the General Finishes High-Performance Water-Based Topcoat Gloss. Although you may have to wait for some hours for it to dry, its durability is outstanding.

Varathane Ultimate Water-Based Polyurethane provides a crystal clear protective layer of coat to interior wood surfaces. If you have had the worst experience with scratches and stains on your white painted surface, opting for a clear coat with maximum stain and scratch resistance is what you need. This is what the Varathane Ultimate Water-Based Polyurethane provides.

This topcoat preserves the white paint from damaging and losing its quality, thanks to the anti-scratch and durable formula. This means that the surface can stay naturally beautiful for a long time. The rich-gloss finish makes it easy to clean with soap and water.

The thing we admire about this topcoat is the ultrafast drying formula. The coat dries to touch within 30 minutes, and you can recoat after two hours. The prep time is minimal, so you don’t have to spend the whole day coating. In addition to that, it has good coverage of up to 125 sq. ft. With this coverage, you can coat large surfaces with small amounts of paint.

This Varathane Clear Coat has a low odor, meaning that you don’t have to worry about nasty smells. Instead, you’ll enjoy the sweet-smelling fragrance emanating from the topcoat while using it.

General Finishes Exterior 450 Water Based Topcoat, 1 Quart, Satin
  • Do not apply clear topcoats over bright white paint, as yellowing may occur due to a reaction to the substrate. Light color paints may also experience yellowing due to topcoat application, but it will less noticeable
  • Exterior 450 Topcoat is fortified with UV absorbers to stabilize and protect the integrity of the finish but will not prevent the wood from changing color from sunlight
  • Water based formula can be brushed, sprayed or rolled; soap and water cleanup

Last update on 2024-05-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This topcoat is utterly impressive. It’s straightforward to use, so you don’t have to worry about any technicalities. While we don’t like that the topcoat is specifically made for wood, we admire its glossy finish and scratch resistance.


  • Tough and durable
  • It offers a gloss finish.
  • UV resistant
  • Comes with inbuilt mildewcide
  • Spreads evenly and quickly
  • Easy to clean


  • It can turn out yellow if the surface isn’t properly prepped.
  • Leaves brush streaks if you change brush strokes.
  • Only usable on woods

Best Clear Coat for White Paint Buyers Guide

It is understandable to say that you think it’s hard to pick the best clear coat that suits your white paint because of the many options available. Still, not to worry, the suggestions below will guide you when looking for a transparent covering for your work.

If you are new to painting, you will find choosing the best clear coat for white paint somewhat tricky. When selecting one, you need to consider some factors, as they will determine if the clear coat will be ideal for the project you are handling. Below are some of the factors that you must consider;

Type of Surface

When buying a clear coat, you need to consider the surface type you would use the product on. Clear coats for white paint are produced for different surfaces. Some are made for wood, metallic surfaces, hardwood floors, exteriors, etc.

Some clear coats are multipurpose; you can use them on various surfaces like metals and wood. Before choosing a clear coat, check the product labeling to ensure that your choice is suitable for the surface type.

Exposure to Weather Elements

Suppose the surface you are coating will be exposed to high temperatures, sunlight, and humidity. In that case, you need a tough, durable product that can offer optimal resistance against these elements. Additionally, if the surface will be used more often, you should opt for a clear coat that withstands breakage since the surface will be more prone to wear and tear.

If the surfaces you are coating will be exposed to extreme weather such as humidity and excess sunlight, you’ll need a clear coat to withstand those conditions. A harsh clear coat is just what you need, which will most certainly survive under high temperatures.

Ease of Application

Many clear coats come as “ready to spray” products while you’ll need to mix others. As a beginner, I advise that you go for ready-to-spray clear coats to avoid the processes involved in mixing the clear coat.

You also need to be wary of the coat’s flow. Ensure you verify from the retailers if the product flows easily. If it does, you will have a hard time controlling it, and you will probably end up with a messy project.

You also need to consider the amount of surface preparation. If you don’t want to spend so much time prepping the clear coat, you should choose a clear coat with minimal prep time.

Type of Finish

Clear coats can come as a matte or a rich-gloss finish. With matte finishes, the scratches are less apparent than on glossy finishes. Matte finishes also appear more consistent in attractiveness because there’s not much light reflection.

A glossy finish is what everyone wants because of its attractiveness. Glossy finishes are shiny and rich. Additionally, it’s easier to clean. When used to coat a piece of furniture, the resale value of such furniture increases. Your choice of finish depends on what you want to coat and your preferences.

Drying time

The required time for a dry coat is imperative, especially if you are completing a period delicate DIY project. It would help if you looked for clear coats that come with the least drying time to touch for your project before recoating.

The drying time is another vital product that you should consider. The time it takes for a clear coat to dry will affect the project’s finish. If you are carrying out a time-sensitive project, you will need a clear coat that will dry quickly.

For instance, if you want to coat your kitchen cabinet, you will need to use a clear coat that dries within the shortest possible time since the cabinet is often used.

Recoat Window

You also need to take note of the recoat window. The recoat window is the time of waiting between each layer of coating. Some clear coats have zero recoat window, while you have to wait for a few minutes to hours before putting the next layer of coat.

Some clear coats may provide extreme resistance against stains and scratches but may not provide much glossiness, while some coats provide glossiness but aren’t thick enough to give that required resistance. However, it would help if you chose clear coats based on the specific requirements.


Some clear coats need sanding between two coatings, while some require no sanding between the coatings. You can choose your clear coat accordingly, depending on the time you have for the polishing and waxing process.

Although sanding between coats gives a better finish, if you don’t want to sand between coatings, you can consider getting clear coats that allow direct application between coatings as sanding is more time-consuming.

Sanding in between coats results in a better finish but can be time-consuming. Moreover, not all clear coats allow you to sand in between the coats. If you want to coat quickly and don’t want to sand between coatings, consider getting a clear coat that allows the direct application.

Interior or Exterior Use

Some clear coats are designed exclusively for interior use or exterior use, while others are intended for internal and external projects. If you want a clear multipurpose coat that you can use on all projects, consider getting the product that allows that by checking the label.

Specific coats are made only for inside or outside use, while you may utilize both inside and outside undertakings. If you are searching for a clear coat that you can use inside and outside, check the item name to guarantee it considers that.

Ease of cleaning

Clear coats with a glossy finish are effortless to clean, so choose a water-based clear coat if you want a finish that is very easy to clean. Some clear coats are easy to clean with soap and water, mainly if you use a water-based clear coat. However, others are difficult to clean, primarily those with a non-glossy finish.


Clear coats come at different prices, with some more costly than others. Typically, the cost of a clear coat depends on the number of great features it possesses. The more the features, the higher the price. If you want to get a clear coat within your budget, consider getting the essential features you need in a clear coat.

4 Areas of Application

Some clear coats are extraordinarily made to be applied on wood, hardwood floors, metallic surfaces, and a car outside, while some are multipurpose, can be used on a wide assortment of surfaces. Therefore, you need to check the name, do some research on the different manufacturers that will help you make the best choice, and guarantee that the clear coat is appropriate for the kind of surface you need to do your work.

How to Seal White Painted Furniture

Sealing white-painted furniture is difficult because you need to follow some critical steps to ensure that the white paint doesn’t bleed. It would be best if you also made sure that the paint doesn’t yellow over a period. So, how do you seal white painted furniture with the best clear coat?

Although there are many good options, one of the best clear coats to seal white-painted furniture is Minwax Polycrylic Water-Based Protective Finish. This finish will keep the white-painted furniture from yellowing while protecting the paint from breaking.

Before we move to the steps needed to seal white-painted furniture, you need to understand that certain finishes do not sit well with white paint. These coats include polyurethane, lacquer, and varnish.

Oil-based polyurethane is typically applied to natural woods or stains to seal them. It doesn’t interfere with the overall look of the piece. However, it’s not recommended for use on white paint or even bright colored paints.

The same can also be said of varnish and lacquer. Like oil-based poly, they are great for painted surfaces and natural wood colors. However, you should avoid using them over white paints because the latter will yellow.

Now that you know the finishes that you should avoid using on white paint let’s move to the processes involved in sealing a piece of white-painted furniture.

Tools that You Need

  • Clear topcoat
  • Foam or synthetic paintbrush
  • 220-grit sandpaper


  • Using a foam or synthetic paintbrush, apply a thin coat to the white painted surface.
  • Allow drying for about ten to twenty minutes.
  • Using 220-grit sandpaper, lightly sand the surface to attain a smooth texture.
  • Apply the second coat. It should be a little thicker than the first coat. Subsequent coats should be thicker than the previous ones.
  • Repeat the process from 1 – 3 if you want to apply subsequent coats.
  • After applying the final coat, don’t bother sanding the surface.

Should I Put a Top Coat on Painted Furniture

Definitely! Putting a top coat on painted furniture will not only protect the furniture from wear and maximize durability but add more beauty to it. These are the reasons why homeowners tend to seal their furniture with a topcoat.

However, it would help if you were careful and selective when deciding which topcoat to go for. Topcoats are selective, which means that you can’t use them on all wood types or paint types. For example, white paints and bright-colored woods might repel some topcoats.

Can you put a clear coat over white paint?

Yes, you can put a clear coat over white paint. Applying a fresh, clear coat over white paint on cabinets and furniture will give the surface a much-needed face-lift. However, you should know that it might yellow after several years. Once this happens, you should remove the clear coat and reapply.

Why is my white paint yellowing?

Yellowing of white paint occurs as a result of the paint’s aging. It’s a natural and typical effect of the drying process of oil-based paints when used on wood. Yellowing is also caused as a result of the wood bleeding through the paint. During this process, wood releases natural chemicals. These chemicals, when mixed with the white paint, can result in yellowing.

What kind of polyurethane do you use on white paint?

You can use polyurethane like Varathane Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane Gloss finish, General Finishes on white paint.

Will polycrylic yellow over white paint?

Yes, polycrylic will yellow over white paint if you added enough oil-based to it. An amber tint will start to appear after a while.

Should I put polyurethane over paint?

You can put polyurethane over any paint, provided it’s properly prepared. Putting polyurethane over a painted surface will protect the paint from wear and prolong its longevity. Additionally, it levels out paints to achieve a smoother finish.

How do you keep white paint from turning?

You can minimize the yellowing of white paint by applying oil-based paints in areas that receive ample light only. Additionally, you should avoid applying oil-based paint near heat ducts.

How many clear coats should you apply?

Two to four clear coats are enough. When applying the first, ensure that it’s light. Subsequent coats should be heavy and wet.

Can I use a clear coat for my wooden floors?

Yes, you can use a clear coat for your wooden floors. All the clear coat products reviewed in this article are rugged, making them suitable for coating wooden floors.

What clear coat NOT to use for white paint?

Lacquer and Varnish
These clear coats should be avoided when it comes to painting your furniture white. It is most likely that lacquer and vanish will turn yellow. They are designed for only natural wood colors, which have been used on old furniture styles for years.

Which is best between water-based and oil-based clear coat?

These are the two types of clear coats; the oil-based was the main clear coat used on furniture until more water-based clear coats became available on the market.

Water-based Clearcoat

More durable water-based clear coats have been made available and are easy to clean up, have a low odor, and the finish is less likely to change over time. This clear coat dries to touch quickly, environmentally friendly and is used on stained, painted, or bare wood.

Oil-based clear coat

They were once the most durable clear coat, but not until they have a lot of competition as the water-based clear coat has dramatically improved. Oil-based clear coats have a strong odor and take longer to dry (which means fewer brush strokes), but they less expensive, last longer, and have a better finish.

Those clear coats can cause the surface of a furniture piece to yellow, known as the ambering effect. If applied on a dark stained piece, it won’t be detectable and will even warm up the color of that piece over time.

But if applied on a white-painted piece, you’ll see how yellowing can be problematic. Although oil-based polys are water-resistant, they are not advisable to be used outside as they may yellow or crack when exposed to UV light.

How to apply clear coat on white paint

Firstly, make sure you let your last coat of paint dry for at least 24 hours before proceeding with a clear coat. Otherwise, you may end up with a very streaky finish. You’ll want to wait longer if your workspace is humid or cold just so your paint coats can have plenty of time to dry all the way through.
Secondly, note that you should never shake a clear coat.

Instead, open your jar and stir for about one minute to ensure all the ingredients are well combined. You can incorporate bubbles which will undoubtedly show up on your finish if you shake the clear coat.

Then proceed to apply the clear coat with a painting sponge. You can make use of a synthetic bristle brush, depending on what you prefer. To avoid adding texture, use long, smooth strokes in one direction and ensure you do not go over the same area more than once. However, If you notice any areas you missed, wait until the coat is thoroughly dried and correct with the next coat.

Each coat should dry for 2-3 hours before the next coat. Lastly, for durability, seal your piece with 3-4 coats of the clear coat. Though the total curing time of a clear coat is about 3-4 weeks, you can start to use your piece after 24 hours. Avoid rigorous cleaning to prevent damaging the finish, and be gentle as much as possible with your piece for the first few weeks.

Benefits of using a clear coat

That furniture that gets a lot of use daily will be better safeguarded from smudges, damages, and fingerprints, which most of the time make your piece look dingy. Water rings from drinking glasses can ruin a furniture piece, but when the right amount of clear coat is applied, you can leave glasses on your table overnight without damage to the surface.

  • When a perfect clear coat is applied, it makes surfaces so much easier to wipe.
  • Clearcoat saves you time on touching up furniture pieces later.
  • It also allows you to scrub your furniture without ruining the finish.

How to prevent yellowing with clear coats

Yellowing has become a widespread complaint among topcoats. It is so frustrating when you spend all your time and effort painting your furniture with a beautiful clean white or light color, only for your paint finish to take on a yellow tint. Many things cause clear coats to be yellow, but they are not always predictable.

However, yellowing is more easily noticeable over white and light colors but can still happen with dark colors. Experiencing yellowing with water-based clear coats is often due to its preparation rather than its clear coat.

With white paint, always use a stain and odor-blocking primer before painting as some woods, for example, are more likely to bleed, containing heavier oils that may require extra coats of stain-blocking primer to prevent yellowing. How do you prime, though? Before you prime a piece of furniture, you need to lightly sand the surface with 220 grit sanding paper so that the primer will adhere best.

Then apply your primer to the already sanded area or surface with a brush, spray can, or roller when scorched. Sand lightly before applying the second coat of your primer. Other nonporous materials or plastic are easier to guarantee no bleed-through from the surface. However, it is advisable to get a good quality clear coat.

Conclusion – Best Clear Coat for White Paint

It is pretty challenging to choose the best clear coat because each has its strength and weaknesses depending on your needs and purposes. Clear coats bring back life to your old furniture and doors, giving them a new look. You can use it on all kinds of surfaces. It lasts longer, quick-drying, and provides a glossy and clean look. It doesn’t matter what kind of paint you use on your furniture or surface.

If you don’t apply the clear coat, it’ll remain unattractive. Choosing the best clear coat expands your property’s worth and lifetime, which is why we selected the top 7 options for you based on our experience that will certainly help you pick and resolve an informed choice.

Coating your white painted surfaces is a surefire way of protecting the paint from scratches and stains. The best clear coat for white paint not only safeguards the furniture but adds beauty, increases the aesthetic value, and prolongs its lifespan.

When buying a clear coat, ensure that you go through the buyer’s guide to avoid purchasing the wrong product. You must consider its intended use, the surface of the furniture, and durability.

Your furniture won’t last forever. To preserve its beauty and avoid scratches, choose a clear coat from among the products here. You will be saving yourself some money from buying a new piece of furniture.

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